The last of the five people charged in the case surrounding the murder of Iola resident Shawn Cook has been sentenced. According to KOAM-TV, Joshua Knapp was sentenced to life in prison with a hard 50, meaning Knapp won’t be eligible for parole for 50 years. Knapp went to trial and was found guilty on July 19th. Shawn Cook was reported missing on March 13th, 2016. His body was found on the banks of the Neosho River in Coffey County, Kansas on April 3rd, 2016. A preliminary autopsy showed Cook died from stab wounds. The other four people who were charged , Amber Boeken, Rhonda Jackson, James Myers and Jessica Epting have all had their cases decided.
A bicyclist from New York was injured in a collision with a car Monday morning near US-59 and Shaw Road. Accprding to The Chanute Tribune, 76 year old Jon Hansen of Montgomery, NY, was flown from the scene to Freeman Hospital in Joplin after the accident at 11:30 am Monday. Hansen was struck as he attempted to make a left turn. The driver of the car was cited for illegal passing.
A three vehicle crash on US 59 a mile north of Mildred early Wednesday afternoon sent at least three people to area hospitals. According to the highway patrol, a northbound vehicle struck a southbound vehicle and then slammed head on into a third vehicle. One of the drivers, 30 year old Kristi Leann Hoard of Fredonia, was taken to Freeman Hospital, while the 15 year old passenger in her vehicle was taken to Children’s Mercy. Another of the drivers, 39 year old Mika Marie Tyhurst of Smithville, Missouri was taken to Labette County Hospital. It was reported that the third driver, 61 year old Guy Runyon of Russellville, Tennessee elected to possibly seek treatment later and would be transported by a private vehicle.
The new director of the Bowlus Fine Arts Center has been named. Daniel Kays of San Jose, California will take over for outgoing director Susan Raines, who retired this summer. He is expected to start next month.
With the recent rains, Governor Jeff Colyer updated the Drought Declaration for Kansas counties. Even though 55 counties were downgraded, a number of area counties remain under a watch or emergency. Counties in our listening area still in a drought emergency are: Anderson, Bourbon, Coffey, Greenwood, Labette, Linn and Neosho. Under a watch are Allen, Wilson, and Woodson counties.
The Iola City Council are again looking at a water rate increase. The Register reports that water fund will run dry by the end of 2019 without a rate increase. Council members are considering a combination of rate increases and budget savings as a fix.
Chanute officials met Monday evening with local homeowners in a workshop about planned improvements to the intersection of Plummer Avenue and 21st Street.
According to The Chanute Tribune, homeowners asked engineers about details of the project. It will add left-turn lanes in all four directions of the intersection. The intersection is actually outside of the city limits. City and county officials have long discussed improvements along the Plummer corridor near Orizon Aerostructures and Chanute High School. The design plans are 60 to 70 percent completed and engineers expect to have them done by mid-November.